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Iraqi Catholics give great witness, revitalize Church March 15, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Our Lady, Society.

A Syrian Bishop has remarked on the profoundly positive effect Iraqi Catholics, fleeing the violence and persecution in their country, have had on the Church in Syria.   Frankly, I think we should be perhaps a bit shamed that these Iraqis – with no home, very little money, and often with health consequences from persecution – seem to live a more vibrant and public faith than many American parishes:

They fill our churches, invigorate our parishes and reinforce the Christian faith in Syria, offering new encouragement to our parishes,” said Archbishop Samir Nassar. “Iraqi refugees take part assiduously in daily Mass despite the fact they come from far away, on foot or public transport. On asking for confession before receiving Communion, these refugees have accelerated the return to the confessional which now has waiting queues.”“Their devotion to the saints and veneration of the Virgin has relaunched the production of candles and the niches of the saints both within and outside the churches are illuminated day and night,” he continued. “They take part in prayer vigils, Eucharistic adoration, pilgrimages and processions on the streets of Damascus during Holy Week and especially in the month of May.”

“They live their more intimate moments in silence before the Most Blessed Sacrament, face-to-face with the Lord

Sometimes hardship and persecution can make one realize what one has.  Perhaps there is a lesson there for the broader Church, and perhaps we should emulate the behaviors of our Iraqi Catholic brothers and sisters.  I, for one, love public processions, and wish they were far more common.  They are such a powerful witness to the Faith.  And you know me……..I think perpetual Adoration, or at least time every day, should be a feature of all our parishes. 

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